Friday, July 22, 2011

Greek Poem - Hellas, My Hellas

Hellas, My Hellas

Hellas, Hellas, where have you gone?
Swept by the sea toward eternity?
From eternity you came and planted
Yourself squarely on the sea of life.
Do not leave now, oh no, my Hellas.

Born in Greece and married to a Greek,
I can't but help keep tabs on what is happening
To my beautiful country, Hellas.
Hellas, with its rich, ancient history that
Has been admired for so many years by all cultures,
For creating the Olympics, which continues even now.

Hellas, with its pristine beaches
Its thousands of beautiful, fresh islands,
With its hospitable people and friendly faces
With its donkeys, grape and olive orchards
There is more to you than the eye meets.

Remember it also for its Acropolis and Parthenon,
For its ancient artifacts and majestic statues
That have found their way to other countries.
Remember it for Socrates and his philosophy
For its mythology, its comedy and tragedy,
And the lessons learned from them -
Even its language infiltrates the sciences
Its political system copied for centuries.

How extensively you have been written about - Hellas,
And even Athena's replica is found in
The Parthenon in Nashville, Tennessee -
A reminder of the neoclassical period
in the early 1900s.

But now you have been forgotten, my country.
My lovely, sun drenched, country -
As foreigners focus on your debt and
Your mismanaged finances;
Corruption has always existed
But why the focus there - now?

Do not die away, but remain strong,
Fight for what you believe in -
Truth, beauty, strength, democracy, freedom
And let the spirit of Greece live on.
Hellas, my Hellas.
Patrida mou, Patrida mou.

by Patty Apostolides, 2011

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